Tag Archives: bacon

Beer Baked Beans

My slow cooker is one of the only pieces of kitchen equipment I tend to use seasonally. It’s used frequently in the fall and winter, usually for hot and heavy items like stews, and winds up taking a breather in storage from about May until September. Every time I use it, though, I amazed by its reliability and practicality. Read More…


I know a good handful of people who’ve traveled to France in the past few months; in my French class alone three people, including my teacher, have visited Paris and other amazing cities in the country. Unfortunately my own plans to travel there have yet to come to fruition but all of the unbelievable stories I have recently heard have me itching to get there more than ever. Though I’ve been lucky enough to hear several accounts of trips to the country, all different but equally dreamy, I’m beginning to have the “always a bridesmaid, never a bride” complex regarding French travel.

A few weeks ago, upon his return from his trip, my French teacher brought a stack of material out of a giant briefcase and reviewed with me maps, guidebooks, and brochures of the amazing places he visited in just over a week in France. Using a guide to the restaurants of Paris, he showed me the places he ate and described for me in detail his meals, which sounded très délicieux. The visions of fresh fish in butter and herbs; sweet, pillowy macarons; and carafes of red wine have had me craving the tastes of France ever since. Even more so, I’ve been itching to expand my repertoire of French recipes.

Bistrot La Minette, a French restaurant located on 6th Street between South and Bainbridge, does an excellent job of bringing authentic French flavors to Philadelphia and the ambience adds to the experience – they have a beautiful, romantic outdoor garden with seating underneath white string lights that makes you forget you’re only several blocks away from the kitschy South Street shops. Of all the unbelievable things I’ve tried there my favorite is their Flammenküche, a rustic French pizza with crème fraîche, onions and lardons (thinly sliced, small strips of bacon). This grilled version of the dish, with homemade crème fraîche, is a great way to incorporate outdoor cooking with French flair. Read More…

Bacon Jam

We encounter a variety of fads every day, from the clothes we wear to work, the music we hear on our headphones, or the diet we stick to (Monday to Friday, of course). Like most trends, all of them have no strict permanence, but may be something we turn back to every now and then. This is my logic for holding onto so many things in my now overflowing closet.

Food fad categories are just like fashion. For instance, cupcakes (for some people) are considered “hot” but for others they are just like polyester and platforms: another trendy item that won’t be stylish for long. That group now identifies Macarons or Whoopee Pies as the dessert all the cool people will be eating. My opinion will always be rooted in my senses; how can something be a temporary fad if it tastes good all the time?

The most mind-boggling food fad is, by far, bacon. When was it an epiphany to a group of trendsetters that bacon was one of the most unbelievable meats available? Not only does it get an A+ for breakfast, but joined with lettuce and tomato you have a great lunch sandwich. For dinner, wrap it around asparagus or a pork loin and you’ve just created a fancy dish that will now taste one-hundred times better just because bacon is now in the picture. Analysts, chefs and culinary artists may tell you bacon is “so over”, but use your better judgment and your tastebuds on this one. To pay homage to my favorite pork product I spent a few hours cooking it down with other ingredients to make Bacon Jam. Believe me, I was as skeptical as you are but keep reading; I promise you, this is another recipe that highlights the staying power of bacon. Read More…

Bacon-Wrapped Molasses Pork

Whether it’s a very plain but perfectly cooked piece of steak or a seasoned and sauced piece of barbecued chicken, sometimes there’s nothing better than a big hunk of juicy meat. Animal rights activists would cringe if they read this, but I enjoy life as a carnivore.

Several methods exist to insure the meat you’re cooking and eating will be moist and flavorful, but my all-time favorite is brining. This scientific process involves soaking the meat in a salt and liquid mixture for an extended period of time and allowing science to play a part in your meal. The soaking salts travel into the meat and trap moisture inside the meat, which remains there throughout the cooking process so your dish is tender and juicy. This recipe utilizes the brining method to produce a succulent, sweet and savory pork tenderloin. Read More…

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